SOFTWARE ENGINEERING Program - Albuquerque

In this program you will learn the development process of software for a wide variety of platforms and systems.

  • Understand the foundations of software engineering concepts
  • Understand the software development process, models, and ethics
  • Learn the skills of software requirements engineering
  • Learn the different software process methods including agile and waterfall methods
  • Study embedded systems design
  • Discuss distributed software engineering including client server computing and software as a service
  • Study software architecture, design and evolution
  • Utilize software testing, quality assurance, and security
  • Monitor software development project management


The Master of Science in Computer Science (MSCS) program provides graduate-level preparation for students in one of today’s most high-demand fields, Computer Science. The degree provides the necessary background and experience in the development of various computational and infrastructure systems, including large-scale databases, distributed systems, secured applications, intelligent systems, and secured networking and cloud infrastructure. It provides students with the ability to research and implement the latest technologies and apply them to problems in computer science.

Experts in Computer Science can find employment in virtually every organization and industry sector, as every organization uses the technologies created by computer scientists. This program aims to prepare specialists who can develop software and hardware systems that meet today’s needs and address tomorrow’s challenges.

Students without undergraduate coursework in Computer Science or a related field will take up to 6 courses (18 credit hours) to provide the required foundation for them to pursue advanced study. These courses will introduce students to the core concepts of computer science, including computer organization, data structures, algorithms, programming, networking and operating systems.

Full Admission

To be accepted for admission into the program, a student must present the following credentials:

  1. A baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution of higher education.
  2. A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Students with a GPA less than 3.0 may be conditionally admitted providing they earn a 3.0 or higher in their first 9 credit hours.
  3. An application for graduate admission, accompanied by an application fee.
  4. Professional resumé.
  5. Official transcripts from all institutions of higher education attended.
  6. A two-page statement of purpose.
  7. Two letters of recommendation.
  8. Undergraduate coursework in discrete mathematics, programming, algorithms, networking, and operating systems. Students without sufficient background can still be accepted, but may need to complete up to 18 credit hours of additional courses (see Foundation Coursework under Degree Requirements).

Please note: International students are required to have a TOEFL test score greater than 550 (computer-based 213; Internet-based 79).

Provisional Admission

Under certain circumstances, students who do not meet one or more of the requirements for full admission may be admitted to the program on a provisional basis. Provisional admission is most commonly offered to applicants who earned an undergraduate GPA less than 3.0. Students admitted with provisional status will be considered for full admission only after they have attempted 9 credit hours in the program and earned a GPA of 3.0 out of 4.0. Provisionally-admitted students who have not attained a minimum GPA of 3.0 out of 4.0 after attempting 9 credit hours of MSCS coursework will be dismissed from the MSCS program.


A student-at-large is not a degree candidate. In order to be admitted as a student-at-large, the applicant must submit official documentation of a baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution of higher education and complete a modified application form. The decision to admit an at-large student to graduate courses belongs to the Graduate Program Director, whose decision is based on an evaluation of the applicant’s undergraduate coursework and possibly an interview. However, should the student decide to apply for full admission status at a later time, but within 5 years of course completion, only a maximum of 9 semester hours of graduate coursework completed as a student-at-large can be applied toward an advanced degree, and only courses with grades of B or better will count toward the degree.

Transfer of Graduate Credit

A student entering the MSCS program with appropriate prior graduate coursework in computer science may have a maximum of 9 credit hours applied to the MSCS degree. Course credits eligible for transfer consideration must meet the following criteria:

  1. All transfer credit must have been earned prior to matriculation in the MSCS program.
  2. The coursework must have been completed at a regionally-accredited graduate school.
  3. A minimum grade of B must have been earned for the course.
  4. The coursework must have an equivalent in the MSCS curriculum.
  5. Courses from outside the United States will be considered if they are evaluated as graduate level by the Office of Admission or the Commission on Accreditation of the American Council on Education.
  6. Credit for prior learning is not awarded for graduate courses.

International Students

International students are required to meet all the admission requirements for full or provisional admission and also the admission requirements specified in the General Information section of this Catalog entitled "Entering International Students."

Good Academic Standing

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Academic Probation and Dismissal

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Time Limitation for Completing the Program

A student must complete all graduation requirements within 7 years from completion of the first graduate course taken at Lewis University. Students remain under the requirement of the catalog in effect at the time of matriculation unless they discontinue attendance for two consecutive years or more, in which case they will follow the catalog in effect upon their return.

Graduation Requirements

To complete the MSCS degree, a student must earn a minimum of 33 credit hours but may need to earn up to 51 credit hours, depending on whether the student must take foundation courses. The foundation coursework consists of 18 credit hours, but may be partially or totally waived for students with sufficient background. All students are required to take 3 credit hours of CPSC 69100 or CPSC 69700 to complete a Master's Project or a Master's Thesis.


While not required, a student may choose to declare a concentration in: Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Digital Forensics, Enterprise & Cloud Computing, or Software Engineering. A second (or dual) concentration is also possible between any two combinations. Some popular dual concentrations are Cybersecurity and Digital Forensics, and Cybersecurity and Enterprise & Cloud Computing, where either can be completed with a total of 39 credit hours. Other concentration combinations are available that can be completed with a total of 42 credit hours. The second concentration is most efficiently earned by using three of its required courses as the first concentration's three required electives and vice versa. Only one master’s project or thesis course is required for a dual concentration. For efficient planning contact your advisor to pick your dual concentration and the appropriate courses. Seeking a dual concentration requires the completion of a Change of Program Form which can be provided by your advisor. 

Degree Offered: Master of Science

Total Credit Hours: 33-51


Program: MS-CPSC-1

II. Research Core (6)

CPSC-59700 Research in Computer Science
CPSC-69100 Computer Science Master's Project
CPSC-69700 Master’s Thesis

I. Foundation Coursework (18)
Foundation courses are additional courses required by students without prior coursework in computer science. A given foundation course may be waived if the student has completed a similar course or shows a professional experience that satisfies the coursework. Note: foundation courses do not count toward the program requirements.

CPSC-50000 Computer Organization
CPSC-50100 Programming Fundamentals
CPSC-50200 Discrete Structures
CPSC-50300 Algorithms and Data Structures
CPSC-50500 Communications and Networking
CPSC-51500 Operating Systems

II. Software Engineering Courses (18)

CPSC-50900 Database Systems
CPSC-60000 Object Oriented Development
CPSC-60500 Software Engineering
CPSC-61200 Software Architecture and Design
CPSC-61300 Software Testing and Quality Assurance
CPSC-61400 Software Production Process

Students who already completed a course similar to, or show a professional experience that satisfies the coursework of, CPSC 50900 may select another 50000- or 60000-level CPSC course instead.

Electives (9):
Students will select 9 credit hours of electives from the CPSC and/or DATA 50000- or 60000-level courses other than the foundation courses. Courses options and catalog descriptions are available through the following links, computer science and data science.  Please note these course will only be available online.


The computer science industry is expected to add 220,000 brand new open positions by the year 2020. The number of jobs for people with software development skills is increasing at twice the rate of the national average job growth.

Industries and individuals will continue to rely on computer technology as the years progress. Virtually every organization could use the services of someone with advanced knowledge of computer science who can create solutions that help them streamline and improve their processes. Hence, there will always be a robust demand for computer science professionals. Additionally, as technology becomes more sophisticated, the demand for better prepared computer scientists will continue to grow - making the graduate degree in Computer Science highly valuable for job seekers and working adults in the field.


  • Ranked as one of U.S. News & World Report's “Top Tier Colleges”
  • Faculty connections in the computer science industry bring job opportunities and real-world projects to Lewis
  • Access to the latest versions of commercial and open-source software
  • Small average class size allows for high interaction with our experienced faculty
  • Hands-on projects for multiple industries and organizations, with a heavy emphasis on service
  • Balanced curriculum that combines theory and practice, allowing for a deeper understanding of computer science technologies


What can you do with a master's in computer science? Jobs are not only plentiful in the field of computer science, but rewarding in terms of financial and professional fulfillment. By completing our master's in computer science requirements, graduates are qualified to work in many positions, including:

  • Software Developer
  • Database Designer
  • Web Developer
  • Network Engineer
  • Cyber Security Engineer
  • Cloud Computing Architect
  • Video Game Developer
  • Simulation Expert

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